Michael Giacchino has become the go-to guy for Pixar, and while John Carter is not made by Pixar it certainly is directed by one of their elite. Be it style or schedule, Stanton parts ways with Thomas Newman and teams up with Giacchino for this flourishing sci-fi epic. There's no doubt that the Oscar winner's music was going to be spectacular, but exactly how spectacular? John Carter's score is as musically sound as Giacchino could make it. It has a wonderful theme and lots of little motifs along the way. The sound is big, but in a sweeping romantic way. The score has some old fashioned sensibilities but packs the energy of modern music.
For Giacchino fans this score will be a real treat because he really draws from his own style a lot. More so than he's done recently. While every score has his style and signature sound I found John Carter to be a wonderful reminder of everything I love about his music. Moments reminded me of LOST, Super 8 and even Medal Of Honor. Giacchino's stamp as a person is all over this score and for that reason makes it feel like a really personal effort. The story being told is a wonderful adventure and the music really captures the listener. The emotions play very well even if they aren't deeply profound. You won't shed any tears from this score like you did with Super 8 (well, at least like I did). This is also a meaty score with lots of substance.
For a springtime blockbuster this is as good as it gets. While Silvestri's Avengers and Hans Zimmer's Dark Knight Rises will undoubtedly rule summer, this score is a great fresh experience. Also, Giacchino fans better enjoy this one because we won't hear him again till Star Trek 2 next year.